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Oliver Cooper Passes Men’s 1st Team Captaincy to Ex-Senior International, Dominic Graham

1 year ago By Stuart Burnside

Wapping HC is pleased to announce the appointment of Dominic Graham as the new Men’s 1st Team Captain.

Cooper’s Lasting Legacy:

Arriving at Wapping in 2008, Cooper came with a solid reputation: National Premier Division hockey at Loughborough, top scorer in the National League with Chelmsford and caps for England Universities.

Wapping highlights include:
- Promotion to East Premier A in 2010 and Men’s 1st Team Player of the Season
- Appointed Men’s 1st Team Captain in 2013
- Led promotion to National League East Conference in 2016

Cooper, ably assisted by ex-England U21 international Andrew Magro as his Vice-Captain, has been a strong leader during his four seasons with the armband. Dominant performances in midfield have been a catalyst for two promotions from the most competitive leagues in the East of England.

Cooper has been a key driver in the development and success of Wapping HC, developing less experienced players, coaching the Men’s 3rd Team and successfully ingratiating the Men’s 1st Team into the community through social initiatives.

Cooper reflected: "After eight years in Wapping 1st Team, the last three as Captain, I feel the time is right to hand the captaincy over to someone who will lead the team forward into the next stage of Wapping’s development and I’m delighted that Dominic will be taking on that role. It’s been a proud time for me helping with Wapping’s recent achievements, particularly in overseeing promotion to National League, and I’m confident that Dominic will do an excellent job of guiding our increasingly youthful side to continued success over the coming seasons. Dominic’s experience at international level playing for Wales as well as his leadership qualities on the pitch will be an invaluable asset in combination with the ever-improving club and coaching support. I really believe that this is just the start of some exciting times. Having said that I won’t be hanging up my boots just yet and look forward to challenging for a place in the squad for Wapping’s first ever season of National League hockey!”.

Chairman, Stuart Burnside also paid tribute: “Breaking into the National League is obviously great, but there's a bigger achievement here. The mark of his success as captain is that the rest of the club actually cared about that. That shows how successful Coops has been at repositioning the 1st Team at the heart of the club. I can't think of a time in my 12 years at the club where 1st Team results have been so widely followed, or been discussed in cars back from away games for other teams. This was a key strategic goal and the Club Executive are very grateful for his efforts. Dom has big shoes to fill, but inherits a great platform for success."

Introducing Dominic Graham
Dominic has been with Wapping for two seasons and is an exceptional new Captain to lead the Men’s 1st Team in its first foray into the National League.

Graham provides a wealth of experience at both International and Club level: an ex-senior international with 28 caps for Wales including two European Championships, a number of National Premier League campaigns with both Beeston and Belper, a HA Cup winner with Beeston and most recently, experience in the National East Conference with Wimbledon. In addition, Dominic also has coaching experience – he was Men’s 1st Team Coach at the University of Nottingham, competing in the BUCS Premier Division. Wapping HC wishes him and the Men’s 1st Team every success in the coming season.

Wapping are now well into their pre-season programme and are pleased to welcome a number of new and returning players to the squad. Wapping’s National League debut fixture will be on Saturday, 17th September 2016 at 5pm, away at Sevenoaks HC.

Updated 16:06 - 2 Sep 2016 by Stuart Burnside

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